Safe Haven for Newborns
The Safe Haven Act is a law that allows parents - or another person who has the parent's authorization - to leave an infant up to 90 days old at a hospital or health care facility without fear of prosecution for abandonment. A parent may also contact 911 and relinquish physical custody of an infant up to 90 days old to a first responder of the 911 call. All states have Safe Haven laws, although provisions differ.
Who is a Safe Haven?
A Safe Haven is an institutional health facility - such as a hospital or healthcare facility or a first responder who responds to the 911 telephone call.
According to the law - an "institutional health facility" means:
A "hospital" as defined in Iowa Code section 135B.1, including a facility providing medical or health services that is open 24 hours per day, seven days per week and is a hospital emergency room, or
A 'health care facility" as defined in Iowa Code section 135C.1 means a residential care facility, a nursing facility, an intermediate care facility for persons with mental illness, or an intermediate care facility for persons with an intellectual disability.
According to the law, "first responder" means and emergency medical care provider, a registered nurse staffing an authorized service program under section 147A.12, a physician assistant staffing an authorized service program under section 147A.13, a fire fighter, or a peace officer as defined in section 801.4.